Blast From the Past :: Cartoon Edition (Part 1)

Written By: Lauren

If you were born in the 90s, chances are, you’ve watched the same cartoons I have. Titles like “Courage the Cowardly Dog,” “The Powerpuff Girls,” “Dexter’s Laboratory,” and “Tom & Jerry” probably hit close to home.

In the Cartoon Edition of “Blast From the Past,” I’ll be jumping in the time machine and reliving my childhood. Maybe I’ll even jog some great memories from yours or get you to re-watch the series all over again, as I have.

This is no particular order, as I love all of these shows equally. This is only part 1 of the cartoon edition, written by yours truly, Lauren!

1 ) “Courage the Cowardly Dog” (1999-2002)

I’m a big fan of horror. I guess some of that influence comes from watching shows like “Courage the Cowardly Dog” and “The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy” as a kid.

“Courage the Cowardly Dog” revolves around a pink, cowardly dog named Courage who lives with Muriel and Eustace Bagges in the middle of Nowhere (the town is literally named “Nowhere”). Strange things happen to the family on a daily basis, and it’s always up to Courage to save his family from the perils of living in the middle of Nowhere, where the doctors, police, and authorities are useless.

Guided by his own instincts, and occasionally help from his talking computer or a generous character, Courage wards off creepy monsters to protect the people he loves… and often gets involved in situations difficult to get out of. If you’re into creepy stuff, this is the cartoon for you (and for me).

I mean, who can forget characters like Katz, Le Quack, Freaky Fred, and Di Lung, that one Asian guy with the memorable laugh? (I’m Asian, by the way.)

2 ) “The Powerpuff Girls” (1998-2005)

“The Powerpuff Girls” is a legendary cartoon and symbolic for its time. Most cartoons have male protagonists, but this one has three female protagonists, each with different personalities, but all with the capability of kicking serious ass.

The Powerpuff Girls are three sisters created by the clumsy but loveable Professor Utonium, who mixed sugar, spice, and everything nice to create “perfect little girls.” When a substance named “Chemical X” was accidentally mixed into the concoction, the three girls were created, each armed with super powers, along with abnormally big eyes and no fingers. They were named Blossom, Bubbles, and Buttercup, and using their powers, they save Townsville time and time again from the bad guys.

Every character in this show, from good guys to bad guys, were iconic. It’s hard to forget the pickle-loving Mayor, headless Miss Bellum, rectangle-headed Professor Utonium, evil Him, and green chimpanzee villain, Mojo Jojo. This show has its share of laughs and scenes that make you go “hell yes,” along with episodes that preach good morals.

Also, I can’t be the only one loving how they always kick the Rowdy Ruff Boys’s butts every time those brats come around, right?

3 ) “Dexter’s Laboratory” (1996-2003)

“Dexter’s Laboratory” made me into the nerd I am and made me get glasses just to be like Dexter. Okay, maybe not, but it definitely influenced my interests in science, and maybe it did make me get glasses, because of all the eye strain I went through watching it.

The series centers on a short, orange-haired, inexplicably intelligent boy named Dexter, who also has an accent (what kind of accent, we will never know). The miniature scientist owns a secret laboratory with all kinds of crazy gadgets and machines. Using his intellect, he devises contraptions and is terrorized by his nosy sister, Dee Dee, who enjoys messing with his inventions and getting him to accidentally blow up his lab (yikes! Think about that insurance bill).

The cat-dog relationship dynamic between the siblings is entertaining, and we always sit around and wonder what Dexter is going to make, and how Dee Dee is going to jeopardize his experiments.

4 ) “Tom & Jerry” (1940-1967)

“Tom & Jerry” aired its first episode in 1940 and is an influential cartoon across many generations, including those born in the 90s (like me). Plot-wise, there’s not much depth to it, just an unlucky, gray cat named Tom and a brown, mischievous mouse named Jerry.

Tom constantly tries to eat and terrorize Jerry, who lives in a hole shaped like a door in Tom’s house. Although Tom is usually the one doing the chasing, Jerry always gets the best of him, beating Tom’s schemes over and over. Poor Tom always gets the butt of things, getting smashed by irons, chased by the neighborhood bulldog, or falling into a bed of nails.

Watching it, you can’t help but sympathize with poor old Tom and wish he would finally eat the little jerk for once. I re-watch a few episodes here and there, and can’t help but hate Jerry. That stupid mouse.

5 ) “Scooby-Doo” (1969-2000s)

Aside from a few instances of cringe-worthy stereotyping and racism in the original “Scooby-Doo” cartoons, “Scooby-Doo” was and is one of my most favorite cartoons of all time.

“Scooby-Doo” has five main characters, four teenagers and a big, Great Dane named Scooby-Doo (commonly “Scooby”). The “meddling kids and their dog” go around solving mysteries, unmasking villains and putting them behind bars.

I’ve watched a majority of the spin-offs from the original series, along with the live action movies and remakes. I refuse to watch “Be Cool, Scooby-Doo!” because I’ve seen how bad remakes can be (“Teen Titans”).

Even though the episodes are predictable, they’re still exciting to watch. I love watching the story unfold, seeing them get chased around by the monster, and devising a trap to catch the bad guy. I can’t count how many times Shaggy or the team say to Fred, “This is the point where we all split up.” Who doesn’t love it when a little self-deprecating humor?

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